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Stedman and Hutchinson, comps. A Library of American Literature:
An Anthology in Eleven Volumes. 1891.
Vols. IX–XI: Literature of the Republic, Part IV., 1861–1889

On the Life-Mask of Abraham Lincoln

By Richard Watson Gilder (1844–1909)

THIS bronze doth keep the very form and mould

Of our great martyr’s face. Yes, this is he:

That brow all wisdom, all benignity;

That human, humorous mouth; those cheeks that hold

Like some harsh landscape all the summer’s gold;

That spirit fit for sorrow, as the sea

For storms to beat on; the lone agony

Those silent, patient lips too well foretold.

Yes, this is he who ruled a world of men

As might some prophet of the elder day,—

Brooding above the tempest and the fray

With deep-eyed thought and more than mortal ken.

A power was his beyond the touch of art

Or armèd strength: his pure and mighty heart.